Supashock and Rheinmetall has conducted the global launch of the ALHS 17 Automated Load Handling System at the ongoing Eurosatory 2018 exhibition in Paris, France.
The ALHS enables the automated loading and unloading of containers, modules and flat racks onto military trucks both safely and efficiently from the within the safe confines of a fully protected truck cabin in a combat environment.
Designed and built in Australia by Supashock, an Adelaide-based automotive technology company now part of the Rheinmetall global corporate network, the concept of integrated load handling systems for military applications has been revolutionised. The 17 tonne Automated Load Handling System – or ALHS 17 – significantly minimises risk by introducing the unique capability of automated loading and unloading of ISO containers, modules and STANAG compliant flat racks of up to 17 tonnes from within a highly protected truck cabin.
The innovative Supashock ALHS 17, fitted to a Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles HX 8×8 truck, will be officially unveiled at Eurosatory 2018 by Australia’s Minister for Defence Industry, Christopher Pyne.
Oscar Fiorinotto, Managing Director of Supashock, stated: “The Supashock team is proud to have developed a revolutionary load handling system in partnership with Rheinmetall that will simplify the distribution of military supplies in demanding battlefield environments while keeping soldiers safe within the protection provided by the integrated armoured cab of the HX 8×8 truck.”
Among other features, the ALHS 17 employs cutting-edge motion technology to create an integrated load handling solution for military applications. By eliminating manual operations through the introduction of automated technology, a single individual can operate the system. The traditional loading and unloading of containers and equipment from military logistics vehicles requires the use of multiple personnel, diverting resources away from other tasks, reducing operator situational awareness, and exposing several individuals in a potentially hostile environment.
A combat situation often mandates the transportation as well as the loading or unloading of military equipment under challenging scenarios:
+ Misalignment of the vehicle and the load that is being carried by the vehicle;
+ Slopes and inclines that the vehicle may have to traverse; and
+ Conditions that include mud, sand and other debris, where no access to the bottom corner fittings may be possible.
The ALHS17 has several integral mechanical degrees of freedom that combine with a computer-assisted user interface, making the task of loading and unloading a container easy in all conditions. Also, the cycle time of loading and unloading ISO containers or modules with the ALHS 17 is considerably faster than current in-service load handling systems.
“Supashock has truly revolutionised the concept of integrated load handling systems for military applications,” said Michael Wittlinger, Head of Rheinmetall’s Logistic Vehicle business unit.
“The ALHS 17 introduces a genuine ‘lift and go’ capability that significantly reduces the time spent by military personnel in a hostile environment, thus increasing overall safety and survivability.”
“Rheinmetall MAN’s vast experience with large in-service fleets and demanding international customers has resulted in an unique product tailored to the specific requirements of modern armies, further boosting the overall capability of Rheinmetall’s HX series of military trucks,” Mr Wittlinger said.
Rheinmetall is a 49 percent shareholder in Supashock. Both companies have a proven track record of partnering on the development of trailblazing technologies.